Immigration reform efforts could be breaking down in both chambers of Congress, as Republican Congressman Raul Labrador (R-ID), considered to be the most important player in the House of Representatives’ immigration reform debate, has now pulled out of the House’s own bipartisan “Gang of 8′ immigration group.
Labrador’s Congressional office released a statement saying that the reason why the Congressman backed out of the “8” was because “members couldn’t satisfactorily resolve the issue of who would be responsible for the health care costs of undocumented illegal immigrants.”
The release added that the group had agreed “in principle” that those illegal immigrants who would benefit from an immigration reform bill, would have to pay for their own health care costs.
Here is what Labrador said-
“I have tremendous respect for the members of the bipartisan group who have been working with me to fix our broken immigration system,” said Rep. Labrador, “But after today’s meeting, the framework of the bill has changed in a way that I can no longer support. Like most Americans, I believe that health care is first and foremost a personal responsibility.”While I will no longer be part of the bipartisan ‘Group of Eight’ House negotiators, I will not abandon my efforts to modernize our broken immigration system by securing our borders and creating a workable guest worker program. I remain hopeful that the House can pass a bill around these principles and I will keep fighting to make it happen.”
While Senator Rubio, who is the glue that keeps the Senate “Gang of Ocho” group together, has not abandoned the sinking immigration ship on the Senate side, he is signaling that he may throw himself a life preserver, and not support his won bill, if certain security-enhancing amendments are not added to the bill.
In our story, Rubio Positioned to Back Out of Immigration Bill we wrote the following-
When asked if he would pull out of the bill if it “veered to the left,” Rubio stated that “it wasn’t about pulling out,” but about getting a bill put together that would be supported.
But now Rubio has changed his position, stating that he could not support the bill if it compromised his principles, also saying that if border security-strengthening amendments do not pass in the Senate, he would not support the bill that “emerged” form the Senate Judiciary Committee.“Well, I think if those amendments don’t pass, then I think we’ve got a bill that isn’t going to become law and I think we’re wasting our time. So the answer is no.-Senator Marco Rubio